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In the past, the bride's family paid almost all expenses for the wedding of their daughter.  In those days, the bride usually had little or no income to pay the expenses herself.


Times have changed, and many brides are making a good income outside the home and therefore assuming more of the wedding financial obligations.  While it was once rare for the groom and/or groom's family to pay half or more than half of the wedding expenses, it is now quite common.


Changing circumstances have caused the traditional financial responsibilities for a wedding to become "blurred," with both sides of the family helping out financially, and quite frequently the bride and groom assume the cost of all or most of the wedding expenses.


Below is a list of traditional financial responsibilities.



The wedding financial responsibilities of the bride and the bride's family


The engagement photographs.


The party to announce the engagement


Stationary, which includes invitations, announcements, thank you cards, "keep the date open" cards, etc.


The bridal gown and bridal accessories, such as shoes, veil, jewelry, etc.


The photographer and videographer.


Her wedding attendant's bouquets, as well as all floral arrangements for the ceremony and reception.  (The groom/groom's family pays for the bride's bouquet, as well as corsages for female members of their immediate families.)


Decorations used at the ceremony and reception.


The music played at both the ceremony and reception.


Any ceremony and reception expenses:  catering, hall rental, favors, etc.


The wedding guest book.


The groom's wedding ring and wedding gift.


Gifts given to the bridesmaids, maid/matron of honor and flower girl, traditionally presented at the rehearsal dinner.  Although the maid of honor and bridesmaids gifts can include virtually anything, they are often pieces of jewelry to be worn at the wedding ceremony.


Any necessary housing expenses for out-of-town bridal attendants.


Transportation expenses for the bride and wedding party to and from the wedding ceremony and reception.


The bridesmaid's lunch and dinner.


Her own medical exam and blood tests for the wedding license.


Financial Responsibilities of the Groom and Groom's Family

  • The bride's engagement and wedding ring.

  • Wedding gift to the bride

  • The marriage license

  • His wedding apparel, purchased or rented

  • The fee or donation to the presiding official

  • The bride's bouquet.

  • The bride's going away corsage.

  • Boutonnières

  • Corsages for close relatives of the wedding party (mothers, fathers, etc.--usually the relatives sitting in the reserved pews.

  • The rehearsal dinner--traditionally hosted by the parents of the groom.

  • All honeymoon expenses

  • Gifts to his attendants:  best man, groomsmen, ring bearer.  Usually presented at the rehearsal dinner.  Although appropriate gifts can be in a wide range of categories, it is often something that can be worn on the day of the wedding, such as tie pins, money clips, wallets, etc.

  • His medial exam and blood tests for the marriage license.


Financial Responsibilities of the Wedding Attendants


Financial Responibilities of the Maid/Matron of Honor and Bridesmaids


  • A wedding gift to the bride

  • A wedding gift to the couple

  • The bridal shower--traditionally organized by the maid/matron of honor; expenses are shared among the bridesmaids.

  • Dresses, shoes and accessories worn for the ceremony.  These are traditionally selected by the bride.



Financial Responsibilities of the Best Man and Groomsmen

  • The Bachelor Dinner or party--traditionally organized by the best man.

  • Wedding gift to the groom.

  • Wedding gift to the couple.

  • Wedding apparel and accessories.  These are traditionally selected by the groom.




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